January 2011
Queensland Sporting Hovercraft Club

Dear Air Cushion Vehicle enthusiast,
The Queensland branch of The Australian Hovercraft Federation held a planning meeting on Tuesday, 18th January 2011, in the Staff Room of the RC primary school, 350 Mortimer Road, Acacia Ridge.
This meeting was attended by:-

Vice President:- Des Goss
Treasurer:- Phillip Audsley
Secretary:- Steven Odgaard

Other members attending were Peter Venn, Arthur Stead, Dale Baxter, and Bud Manthey.
Visitor for the evening was Rita Chaffey.

Cruise report - Kirkleagh, Lake Somerset - Saturday 15th January 2011.

The cruise on Lake Somerset was abandoned due to flooding crisis.
Seqwater Recreation Update - 10:30 am Thursday 13th January 2011.
Due to the current weather conditions and flooding in South East Queensland, all Seqwater recreation sites are closed and will remain closed until further notice. Visitors are advised to avoid travelling to Seqwater sites during the flood crisis situation, even if roads are open. Seqwater recreation areas may need to remain closed until the sites can be properly inspected and public safety can be assessed.

Report from Flood assistance to the State Emergency Service at Toogoolawah

Peter Venn gave an interesting report on the involvement of air cushion vehicles in flood disaster service. Both Peter and Russ Pullen notified the authorities that they had hovercraft available for any rescue work, but they were thanked and the offer declined.

It seems that the volunteer personnel in SES and police service across this land are ordinary Australians who have trained hard and long and are keen to work as a highly professional team. In times of need, these skills are put to the test. They know their job and they know their patch. When someone from outside the patch enters with resources that may be unique or unorthodox, there will always be an element of hesitation to use untried and untested methods. This is typical of the administration response from well funded city and urban branches of the SES and police service.

Fortunately, the hovercraft club has held a long standing but still distant relationship with one small SES branch. It is with thanks to Neville Finlay of Toogoolawah that a call for help was placed and that 5 professional and experienced ACV commanders with reliable craft were quick to respond.

Steven received the call from Neville Finlay at Toogoolawah SES at 11:00 am Wednesday 12th January 2011. All Esk and Toogoolawah SES boats are in rescue service, could use a hovercraft if any can get through. Roads cut to the south at Blacksoil on Warrego Highway, can't get through even with police escort. Roads cut from the north, mud slides at Landsborough and flooded roads north of Burpengary.

Russ Pullen, Emma Pullen and Larry Davies of the Sunshine Coast and Peter and David Venn of Redlands formed a team and headed off to Kilcoy and ultimately Toogoolawah and regions around the two swollen lakes which were filled to maximum reserve capacity in an attempt to hold back the northern flood waters.

Russ and Emma Pullen: Flying Fish 35hp four stroke Briggs and Stratton
Larry Davies: Flying Fish 35hp four stroke Briggs and Stratton
Peter Venn: Turbo TP6 80hp four stroke Subaru with 18hp 4stroke Honda lift
David Venn: Expo Turbo 51hp two stroke Yamaha

On Thursday 13th January the craft on trailers were held up at Kilcoy due to the swollen Stanley River upstream of Somerset Dam. Peter was to ferry the lightweight empty Flying Fish trailers across the flooded river in his larger TP6 craft, so that at least 2 small craft could be road transported beyond the Kilcoy district and on to the Toogoolawah region.

Unfortunately one police officer had reservations about this technical manoeuvre and ordered the craft to go no further. Peter said they could have gotten through without any problems, but it was Police verses SES and they apparently wouldn't co-operate with each other.

The craft were instead used to carry medicines and lightweight supplies to ambulance staff for distribution to cut off communities along the D’Aguilar Highway.

All 4 craft made it to Toogoolawah on Friday 14th January. Peter, David and Larry stayed in the Toogoolawah SES shed on Friday night and continued to help throughout the weekend.

Click on the next and previous buttons below to view some flood assistance photos.

David Venn took 45 minutes of video from a small ipod camera mounted at various parts of the Turbo Wedge 240. Bad vibration caused a poor image when mounted to the fan duct, but good video recording was achieved when mounted to the bow and when hand held. This was played to the club meeting on Tuesday 18th January 2011 courtesy of Peter Venn and Arthur Stead.

Click on the thumbnails below for a couple of 3 minute videos of the flood assistance.

D’Aguilar Highway flooding
Upper Brisbane River

Other News:-
Welcome to Bud Manthey of Worongary on the Gold Coast as our first new member for the year.
Bud is interested in using hovercraft for rescue work.

Australian Hovercraft Federation News:-
On the weekend of 8th, 9th & 10th July 2011, the Queensland Hovercraft Club will host the Australian National Rally at Kirkleagh on Lake Somerset, about 2 hours north of Brisbane.

Stay tuned - more information on the rally will be available shortly.

Next club cruise:-
The next club cruise will be held on Saturday 5th February 2011 at Kirkleagh on Lake Somerset.

With last months cruise cancelled because of severe flooding in SE Queensland, we'll have another try for Lake Somerset for our February cruise. This is the venue for the Australian National Rally in July and we need to spend some time here to finalise our preparations.
Meet at Fernvale at 10:00 am and pay for permit ($15) at the information centre.
Have a meat pie from the Old Fernvale Bakery then proceed north to Kirkleagh.
Meet at Kirkleagh at 11:00 am.

Alternatively, come from Northern Suburbs of Brisbane via Caboolture, Wamuran, Woodford and Kilcoy to meet at Kirkleagh at 11:00 am. Pay for permit at Kirkleagh.
Contact for the event is Steven Odgaard on 0400 798 404.

Next Queensland branch meeting:
The next club meeting will be on Tuesday 15th February 2011 at 7:30pm.
It will be held in the Staff Room at Our Lady of Fatima RC primary school, 350 Mortimer Road Acacia Ridge.

Hope you can come. All welcome.

Steven Odgaard
QSH secretary